The O'Reilly Factor was a political news and talk show which served as the flagship program of Fox News, and whose host Bill O'Reilly was the face of that network, from 1996 to 2017. It consistently topped the ratings as the most watched cable news show, and its popularity meant it was one of the most parodied as well. Its original title was The O'Reilly Report, which should sound familiar.
O'Reilly has also written several books, some of them tie-ins to the show, some of them not. There used to be a radio show called The Radio Factor, but that died in early 2009.
On April 19, 2017, Fox News officially announced that O'Reilly's employment was terminated amid numerous sexual harassment allegations, and the show aired its last episode on April 21. His slot at Fox News Channel was taken over by Tucker Carlson Tonight.
The O'Reilly Factor contains examples of:
- Adam Westing:
- O'Reilly and his show appear in Iron Man 2, parodying two of his show's segments at once.
- He also appears in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, interviewing former Sector Seven agent Simmons. The interview quickly devolves into an argument between the two over whether or not the US should continue supporting the Autobots.
- On an episode of Rizzoli & Isles, O'Reilly yet again appears as himself. Many of his usual segments are mentioned, as Rizzoli's mother is a big fan of the show. Also, for some reason, he's covering the trial of a Boston gangster, which is a fairly large departure from his usual political analysis (although he does cover non-political subjects on his show from time to time).
- Almighty Janitor: While O'Reilly doesn't really hold any special positions in terms of executive power within Fox News' building, the man's popularity combined with being a veteran reporter and, essentially, an "Elder Statesman" of the channel makes him second to Roger Ailes in terms of power... or at least until O'Reilly was fired in April 2017.
- Balance of Power: Of the two people who alternate as serving as O'Reilly's replacement host when he's away, Laura Ingraham is to O'Reilly's right, and Juan Williams is to O'Reilly's left. It's also worth noting that while Ingrahama and Williams are both strongly partisan when it comes to their alignments, their Factor guest-hostings generally have them calling things down the middle.
- Breakout Character: Jesse Watters, who proved popular enough to get his own monthly show that's essentially an hour of his segment.
- Catchphrase: O'Reilly has many, most notably:
- "Just remember: The spinnnnnnnnnnn...stops right here! Because we're definitely looking out — for you."
- "Caution! You are about to enter the No-Spin Zone."
- "Name and town, name and town, name and town, if you wish to opine...."
- Characterization Marches On: O'Reilly has occasionally broken ranks with more hardline right-wingers, such as his foils Glenn Beck and Laura Ingraham, on a semi-regular basis, and has caught some flak for it from a right-wing radio host or two.
- Deadpan Snarker: O'Reilly's sense of humor is generally this, making a few absurd remarks toward "crazies" like Beck and Ingraham or those on the left like Mark Lamont Hill or Colmes who he interviews regarding their various theories on this and that, seemingly giving a more reasonable view on situations than most others. Also, when he and Stephen Colbert squared off on the Factor, it was O'Reilly's Deadpan versus Colbert's over-the-top Large Ham, and it was a battle worthy of song... but don't take our word for it.
- Drugs Are Bad: O'Reilly has remained strongly opposed to drugs of any kind, including marijuana. Whenever he hosts a segment on any sort of drug debate, O'Reilly will even tell his guests ahead of time that he's strongly against drugs and that he won't be a fair and balanced moderator.
- Insult Backfire: In a famous instance, a guest challenged Bill's stance on The War on Terror by claiming Bill wouldn't send any of his family to fight in the war (a common accusation levied against "hawks"). Bill shot back without missing a beat, "My nephew just enlisted!—You don't know what the hell you're talking about!"
- Irishman and a Jew: Bill has this dynamic with Jon Stewart. Their debate "Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Auditorium" was epic.
- Only Sane Man: Like all political pundits, he likes to pitch himself as the Only Sane Man in the American media. Compared to the usual political pundit, he does appear rational. The fact that Jon Stewart respects him immensely and isn't nearly as critical of him as he is toward the harder-right shows also helps him out.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: When he sets his sights on you...run. Like the wind. Unless you're Al Franken.
- The Rival:
- O'Reilly's primary rival has been Jon Stewart, with whom he has enjoyed lively debates with every time they've appeared on each other's show. It's friendly enough that they've been able to co-host events such as "The Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Room."
- He has also had a friendly rivalry with Stephen Colbert, made especially weird since Colbert is basically a parody of him.
- It's not quite as heated as it used to be, but Keith Olbermann and O'Reilly have this relationship. While O'Reilly has always made sure not to mention Olbermann by name, Olbermann makes comments about O'Reilly by name whenever he can.
- His most vitriolic rivalry was with Al Franken, who despised him personally and once got into a shouting match with him. Bill returned the favor by dismissing him as "Stuart Smalley," one of Franken's characters on Saturday Night Live.
- Running Gag: Whenever the state of Minnesota's brought up in regards to elections (for instance, during the 2012 election cycle and the Republican Primaries), Bill's always quick to snark about how Minnesota's "the state that elected Al Franken to the Senate and Jesse Ventura to the Governor's Mansion."
- Self-Deprecation: See Adam Westing. O'Reilly isn't above mocking his own image.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Glenn Beck. They respect each other and have toured together numerous times, but they can make a lot of jokes at each other's expense. He has this also emanating from his interviews with Jon Stewart. He has a small degree of this with a few other people who are regulars on his show occasionally.
- Worthy Opponent: O'Reilly and Jon Stewart appear to think of themselves as this. Most notably in "The Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Room," where they debated each other and later acknowledged that it was a tough debate and that both of them made great points.